Microsoft's Open Source Partnerships Widens Azure Market

Microsoft Open Tech (MS Open Tech), a wholly owned subsidiary of Microsoft, has added two new partnerships under its belt. Announced during the ongoing O’Reilly Open Source Convention (OSCON) in Oregon, they have teamed up with Packer.io and OpenNebula. These two partnerships will allow different technology systems to operate together seamlessly, particularly Microsoft Azure.

MS Open Tech builds open source code to bridge the gap between Microsoft and non-Microsoft technologies. Well, they have wasted no time effecting this vision. They hit the ground running. So far, they have managed to partner with standards organizations  like W3C, IETF, OASIS, Ecma, DMTF, as well as open source communities including: JQuery, MongoDB, Apache Cordova, Redis, Apache, Qpid, Apache Solr, Outercurve, Eclipse, Node.js, Cocos2D, Ogre3D, Web Platform Docs, Symfony, Doctrine, WebKit, GitHub, and CodePlex. They added Docker in June this year, bringing libswarm and Kubernetes into Azure.

Packer is an open source tool used to automate creation of identical machine images for multiple platforms from a single source configuration. MS Open Tech has created two plug-ins for Microsoft Azure and Hyper-V to integrate Microsoft technologies with Parker.

Mitchell Hashimoto, founder of HashiCorp, creator and project lead of Vagrant and Packer, seemed excited with this new progress, both for Parker and developers. He said, “This partnership is a great step in the direction of a simpler development and deployment process for developers. We are excited to work with Microsoft and others to enable support and provide the tools needed for efficiently managing private and public cloud infrastructure.”

The other big announcement was the partnership with OpenNebula. OpenNebula “can be primarily used as a platform to manage virtualized infrastructure in the data center or cluster. It also supports Hybrid Cloud as well as Public Clouds by providing Cloud interfaces to expose its functionality for virtual machine, storage and network management.” MS Open Tech introduced a new set of plugins to allow organizations and developers to easily utilize Azure platform on OpenNebula infrastructure.

This affiliation will allow Microsoft to gain access to OpenNebula’s existing clients, especially those already using hybrid cloud model and those who will be in transition in the near future. Regardless, Rubén S. Montero, Chief Architect of the OpenNebula project is unperturbed, and in fact welcomed the idea saying, “We believe in the coexistence of the private and public cloud, and all the team is excited about giving the OpenNebula users using the hybrid model the possibility of on-demand access to a leading cloud provider like Microsoft Azure.”

OpenNebula announced the release and availability of a Beta version of its platform in a blog article by Ignacio M. Llorente. “The Beta version of OpenNebula 4.8 bringing the new drivers was released today and is available for testing. The integration has been carried out using the Microsoft Azure SDK for Ruby, which interacts with the Azure REST API, enabling a complete control of the lifecycle of Virtual Machines in a transparent way within an OpenNebula cloud. Thanks to these new plug-ins, private resources can be easily supplemented with resources from Azure to meet fluctuating demands.”

It is a bit chaotic at Microsoft right now. With the ongoing restructuring, they are dropping services and products that do not have a bright future. Thus, these recent partnerships are a loud sign that Microsoft is banking on its cloud services to pull through these tumultuous times.

CloudWedge